On Saturday, July 12th, more than 100 members of the Lake Fairlee Association gathered at Horizons Day Camp on a sunny and warm late afternoon. We started socially and informally, with wine and gossip on the porch.
Dinner followed, catered by Bare Bones Catering (thank you, Crystal!) and then a pleasantly succinct business meeting. President Suzy Kerr chaired the meeting, and in short order we elected new Trustees AJ Kemon and Donna Walter. Libby Chapin reported on the status of the Greeter Program, and Skip Brown spoke about the milfoil. He first acknowledged Tofer Sharp for his work leading the milfoil effort in past years, then introduced three of the divers who were present. Finally Treasurer Ridge Satterthwaite reported on the Association’s finances and warned us of the need for additional donations if we are to keep the divers working through September.
Our first guest speaker was our own Dale Gephart, a lake resident and amateur naturalist. (He is also a physician and teacher) Dale shared his unique view of the lake as a complex living system, and told us about interesting plant and animal species he has observed while swimming near his shoreline armed only with a mask. He emphasized the importance of sustaining the diversity of species in our lake, and the part that each of us can play as responsible stewards.
Perhaps the highlight of the evening was a presentation by Ben Kilham, a resident of nearby Lyme, and nationally recognized expert on Black Bears. Ben spoke at length about his experience raising black bears from cubs and releasing and following them in the wild. He is a talented photographer as well as a naturalist (and a gunsmith, it happens) and he illustrated his talk with remarkable “slides” of his favorite cubs in their natural environment. He said that he gets alongwith bears better than with people; we are glad that he came to speak to us anyway.
Special thanks to AJ Kemon for organizing the whole evening, and Donna Walter for managing the sign in table and accounting for the dues and dinner fees. Thanks also to the Aloha Foundation for letting us use the facility.
Dale Gephart and Skip Brown prepared an information sheet which was distributed at the meeting. It contains some facts about the health of Lake Fairlee and about our program of milfoil eradication. You can read it HERE.